Civility Matters

Meredith and Susan were proud to attend the Indian River County Bar Association’s (IRCBA) November 14th meeting. At the meeting, they were recognized for their pro bono work at the November 12th Ask-A-Lawyer Event, co-hosted by the IRCBA and Florida Rural Legal Services.

The meeting also included a seminar on “Civility Matters.” While the Florida Bar Oath of Admission now contains a Framed Florida Oath of Attoneyclause on civility, a reminder never hurts.

Too often, both lawyers and the public believe that fighting and nastiness is how you show that your attorney is the one to be feared and respected. Roaring and stomping in the courtroom or mediation or elsewhere rarely results in a better outcome for the client. When lawyers and clients can sit down, calmly discuss the issues, and fashion a resolution that can address all parties’ concerns, people tend to walk away feeling better about the experience.

Of course, some cases will go to trial. There’s no working them out without having the judge or jury make a final call. Still, civility matters. This is especially true in family court, where the judge has seen the parties in court for many months. The judge typically is not impressed by blustering and yelling. The judge wants to know what the issues are, hear the legal basis for them, hear testimony to establish the facts necessary, and then render a decision.

At Jones Chesnutt, we truly believe that civility matters. That principle is built into how we operate. If you want to know more about how we can help you, please contact us.

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